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Thursday 26 July 2012

Capital Ex 2012 Edmonton, AB Mini donuts, beef bacon and Ribfest - ribs ribs ribs!

Its sunny, its rainy, its music and its Carni-food and Rib madness this year at Capital Ex! Foregoing the previous Monster Burger's massive burgers that benefited the local food bank, this year, the food highlight was definitely the RibFest pairing up 5 award winning meat smoking - rib basting - pulled pork - moist brisket - meat lovers' havens with local charities. Northlands is donating $500 to each charity listed below, and you can vote for your fav so one of the rib masters will get bragging rights:
-Smoke and Bones BBQ Southern style BBQ- Boys and Girls Clubs, and Big Brothers Big Sisters
-Prairie Smoke and Spice BBQ - The Edmonton Food Bank
-Smokin’ Babes - Junior Achievement
-Gator BBQ original deep south BBQ -Kids Up Front
-Smokin’ Guns - 4-H Alberta

But first things first, we stopped off to pick up a smoked turkey leg. Not as large as the ones they had down in Calgary during this year's Calgary Stampede, but still satisfyingly juicey, salty-savory-smokey messy to eat goodness. Bqq sauce on the side.  We washed it down with a lemonade (no pic)

Now, the ribs! Dal's eye's just widened and a great big grin broke out over his face when he found out about the RibFest. We made a beeline straight to it :D There was 4 of us, so we divided and conquered: we randomly chose 4 out of the 5 Rib stands and bought a 1/2 rack of either pork or beef ribs to share. Dal had some pulled pork and brisket from a few of the stands, but we didn't take pics. First up was Smoke and Bones. I chose it mainly because there was a line up and it smelled yummy!

Smoke and Bones had the largest portions out of all 4 stalls offering ribs that we hit up. Though the ribs were good -tender, a bit moist with a hit of a very mild chipotle sauce, they were unfortunately also the driest.

Next on our list was Gators where they lovingly baste their ribs with...

Their secret award winning sauce soaked basting mop!

We loved the beef ribs from Gators. By far the smallest portions in terms of beef ribs (3 bones worth), flavorwise they had it going for them.

Clear notes of apple (cider?) shone through these moist fall off the bone ribs, that had a nice smoke line. These beef ribs stood well on their own and did not need a sauce to elevate them to finger licking yumminess!

Our 3rd half rack of beef ribs hails from Smokin' Guns.

Moist and on the leaner side, these beef ribs were generously slathered in a thick tangy BBQ sauce, where the sauce was more center stage than the lightly smoked ribs.  If you love your ribs drenched in BBQ sauce, this is the place for you!

Finally, we had our fourth contender Prairie Smoke and Spice BBQ

These pork ribs were killer good - super juicey moist and saturated with flavor. NOM!

With hardly any tummy space left after pigging out at the Rib Fest, we spotted this lovely...

Having seen beef bacon recently at Costco, we picked up a cup of bacon, packed full of slices of salty with a touch of sweet BACON! Its bacon straddling middle ground - less salty than regular bacon, and not as sweet as applewood smoked bacon, as its seasoned lightly with sea salt and molasses, with a whole heck less fat than regular bacon. Turkey bacon is still healthier for those health nuts. But you eat bacon because its awesome! Dal was wowed by their incredible bacon sandwich drizzled in molasses he had earlier (no pic). Curious? The guys manning the booth hand out free samples for you doubters out there.  Bottom line.. get your bacon on!

After so much meeaaat, El and C stepped up and got a super icing sugared elephant ear to snack on. Mmm.. can't go wrong with a gigantic piece of fried sugary dough.

We meandered around the park, watched the family friendly Aluminium Show, shopped at the Exhibition Hall, digested, and were disappointed with the showing at the Casino Lounge. There was a few folks enjoying drinks from the single bar set up beside the slot machines... it had two out of the ? # of food tables attended by staff, and the desserts advertised where nowhere to be seen around dinner time. Do it right, or don't bother.  It was so sad, it was embarrassing.

After watching some cultural dances, and looking at the neat cultural exhibits, we headed back outside for some Fairway Root beer and...
Magical ain't it?
Mini donuts!!! Shaken and evenly coated with cinnamon sugar before they're put into a paper bag pipping hot, you can't leave without having at least one.. bag!! :D

We're going to head back this weekend and try to win another super Domo
Domo go nomnomnom... Eatyourcity!!!

...and try more ribs, brisket, pulled pork, smoked chicken... and of course, more of the best mini donuts!! :D

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